News / Africa

MSF Struggles to Help South Sudan Refugees in Uganda

  • South Sudanese wait in line to register as refugees in Uganda after arriving at Ayilo refugee resettlement camp.
  • A health worker prepares to give medication intravenously to a South Sudanese child who has tested positive for malaria, in Ayilo refugee resettlement camp in Uganda
  • An MSF staffer tests a child's nutrition levels at a refugee resettlement camp in Uganda on March 19, 2014.
  • An elderly South Sudanese woman arrives at Ayilo refugee camp in Uganda.
South Sudan Refugees in Uganda
Bonifacio Taban
The emergency medical aid group Doctors Without Borders (MSF) says it is struggling to provide care for the overwhelming number of refugees pouring into Uganda from South Sudan.

MSF provides all of the basic medical care to refugees living in four refugee resettlement camps in Uganda's Adjumani district.

Nurse supervisor Jasper Adotus said MSF sees up to 150 patients on weekdays and 120 on weekends, and believes that many more children and adults are going without medical care because MSF does not have the resources to reach them.

"We are still working on trying to recruit many more staff to come in... We also have some challenges with our drugs. Some drugs are going out of stock because we are experiencing quite a large number of patients coming in,” he told VOA.

The number of people in need of medical care is expected to go up when the rainy season begins in earnest next month, bringing with it an increased risk of contracting water- and mosquito-borne diseases.

MSF has begun constructing health centers in the four camps in northern Uganda housing South Sudanese refugees and hopes to have them finished before the heavy rains set in.

But William Mabior Deng, the chairman of Ayilo refugee camp, said time is too tight before the rains for the refugees to pack up and move to permanent settlements where health services are better.

So they will stay where they are and just hope for the best, he said.

Number of refugees increasing

The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a report released last week that nearly a quarter of a million South Sudanese have fled to neighboring countries.

Uganda has taken in the largest number of refugees from South Sudan -- around 87,000. About 76,000 have gone to Ethiopia, 58,000 to Sudan and 28,000 to Kenya, the report says.

You May Like

Isolation, Despair Weigh on Refugees in Remote German Camp

Refugees resettled near village of Holzdorf deep in German forestland say there is limited interaction with public, mutual feelings of distrust

Britons Divided Over Bombing IS

Surveys show Europeans generally support more military action against Islamic State militants, but sizable opposition exists in Britain

Russia Blacklists Soros Foundations as 'Undesirable'

Russian officials add Soros groups to a list of foreign and international organizations banned from giving grants to Russian partners

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: David from: U.S.A.
March 30, 2014 3:18 PM
Yes! God bless all the agencies who show so much care to south Sudan. I hope southern sudanese leader should think more about the innocent s. Sudanese who do not need Meaningless war. Only God will change and fix the stupidity that S.Sudanese leaders encounter on the act of greediness.
Sorry for my loud voice but i do not see any benefit for this war.

by: gatkuoth gatduel chuol from: bentiu
March 28, 2014 11:09 AM
God blessed M.S.F for their help in s.sudan

By the Numbers

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
With HIV, Can We Get to Zero?i
Carol Pearson
November 29, 2015 1:23 PM
The theme of this year's World AIDS Day is "Getting to Zero." The U.N. says new HIV infections have been reduced by 35 percent since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths are down by 42 percent since the peak in 2004. VOA's Carol Pearson takes a look at what it might take to actually have an AIDS-free generation.

Video With HIV, Can We Get to Zero?

The theme of this year's World AIDS Day is "Getting to Zero." The U.N. says new HIV infections have been reduced by 35 percent since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths are down by 42 percent since the peak in 2004. VOA's Carol Pearson takes a look at what it might take to actually have an AIDS-free generation.

Video Political Motives Seen Behind Cancelled Cambodian Water Festival

For the fourth time in the five years since more than 350 people were killed in a stampede at Cambodia’s annual water festival, authorities canceled the event this year. Officials blamed environmental reasons as the cause, but many see it as fallout from rising political tensions with a fresh wave of ruling party intimidation against the opposition. David Boyle reports from Phnom Penh.

Video African Circus Gives At-Risk Youth a 2nd Chance

Ethiopia hosted the first African Circus Arts Festival this past weekend with performers from seven different African countries. Most of the performers are youngsters coming form challenging backgrounds who say the circus gave them a second chance.

Video US Lawmakers Brace for End-of-Year Battles

U.S. lawmakers are returning to Washington for Congress’ final working weeks of the year. And, as VOA's Michael Bowman reports, a full slate of legislative business awaits them, from keeping the federal government open to resolving a battle with the White House over the admittance of Syrian refugees.

Video Taiwan Looks for Role in South China Sea Dispute

The Taiwanese government is one of several that claims territory in the hotly contested South China Sea, but Taipei has long been sidelined in the dispute, overshadowed by China. Now, as the Philippines challenges Beijing’s claims in an international court at The Hague, Taipei is looking to publicly assert its claims. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.

Video After Terrorist Attacks, Support for Refugees Fades

The terrorists who killed and injured almost 500 people around Paris this month are mostly French or Belgian nationals. But at least two apparently took advantage of Europe’s migrant crisis to sneak into the region. The discovery has hardened views about legitimate refugees, including those fleeing the same extremist violence that hit the French capital. Lisa Bryant has this report for VOA from the Paris suburb of Cergy-Pontoise

Video Syrian Refugees in US Express Concern for Those Left Behind

Syrian immigrants in the United States are concerned about the negative tide of public opinion and the politicians who want to block a U.S. plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. Zlatica Hoke reports many Americans are fighting to dispel suspicions linking refugees to terrorists.

Video Thais Send Security Concerns Down the River

As Thailand takes in the annual Loy Krathong festival, many ponder the country’s future and security. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai.

Video Islamic State Unfazed by Losses in Iraq, Syria

Progress in the U.S.-led effort to beat Islamic State on its home turf in Iraq and Syria has led some to speculate the terror group may be growing desperate. But counterterror officials say that is not the case, and warn the recent spate of terror attacks is merely part of the group’s evolution. VOA National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more.

Video Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continues

One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs